With almost 1,700 shops and 20,000 staff serving a million customers a day, Greggs is the UK’s largest ‘bakery food-on-the-go’ retailer.
The company’s supply chain model is based around a series of regional bakeries strategically located throughout the country which deliver to Greggs shops in their surrounding areas. At each regional bakery the raw materials used for the production of Greggs’ wide range of products are stored within dedicated ambient, chilled and frozen storage facilities.
Greggs’ recently updated its Gosforth bakery and raw materials storage facility by merging two units into one purpose-built site.
RediRack – Greggs’ long-term storage systems supplier – was tasked with reconfiguring the racking within the store in such a way that would enable Greggs to increase the pallet capacity in the most financially-efficient way possible.
RediRack came up with a design that made full use of the existing racking from the original buildings but, by adding new sections where necessary, raised the height of the racking structure from 7.2 to 9 metres.
The new design has allowed Greggs to increase pallet capacity at the Gosforth raw materials store from 893 to 1290 pallet spaces while keeping storage system build costs to a minimum.
"When Greggs approached us with the plans for the new Gosforth bakery conversion it was obvious that the job was going to require careful management and an all round team effort to achieve the objectives," says RediRack’s Gary Marriott.
"Because cost was a major consideration with the project, we agreed to reconfigure the existing pallet racking within our new design," he adds.
The existing RediRack racking – which was still in excellent condition after three years of heavy usage – had to be dismantled four months prior to re-use to allow building works to progress during the building conversion process. This meant that the rebuild of the racking needed to be planned in three phases to coincide with the handover of the completed phases of the building. All three phases were completed on time and within the pre-agreed budget.
The RediRack system is very popular within the food industry due, in part, to the fact that it is easier to maintain and keep clean than alternative systems – something which makes compliance with stringent food industry hygiene regulations simpler to realise.
Ease of maintenance is achieved thanks to the ‘bolt free’ manufacturing technique used in the production of RediRack’s pallet racking. RediRack is the UK’s only manufacturer of welded frame racking and, because the system is ‘bolt free,’ there are no areas within the racking’s horizontal or vertical sections where food particles can collect, while its seamless painted surfaces can be easily wiped clean when required.
Of equal importance is the fact that the racking’s welded construction method means that there are no nuts, bolts or other metal components to come loose and, potentially, find their way into the raw materials being stored and, ultimately, into finished goods destined for the consumer.
RediRack has been Greggs’ primary pallet racking supplier for over a decade during which time a number of Greggs sites have been re-engineered to keep pace with increasing demand or shifting consumer buying trends.
"The storage configuration within our sites can change frequently," says Greggs’ Group Production Project Manager, Peter Boughton. "RediRack’s solution is perfect for us because it is scalable. Because it can be changed easily, it is both cost-effective and time saving."
He continues: "RediRack have been primary pallet racking suppliers to Greggs for more than 10 years. The RediRack project team always respond to our changing needs in a timely manner, helping us find cost effective solutions that allow Greggs to save time and money."
RediRack’s Gary Marriott, who has handled the Greggs account on RediRack’s behalf for more than a decade, commented: "Because we have been manufacturing our racking the same way since the mid-1970s, it is straightforward for us to adapt Greggs’ storage systems or add additional pallet spaces as required without having to introduce an entirely new system every time one of Greggs’ sites is reconfigured.
"We always go the extra mile to deliver projects on time and within budget, responding to Greggs changing needs where necessary. Our scalable storage solutions have supported Greggs’ growth in a cost effective way and we are delighted to have had such a long and successful working relationships with Greggs."